Cookie Policy

What are Cookies?

A cookie is a piece of data in text form, which identifies users’ computers to the National Trust for Scotland’s server. Cookies remind the server of a user’s preferences from the last time he or she visited a particular site. There are several types of cookie and the most common are referred to as “session” cookies. The website creates “session” cookies to store some of the preferences of users moving around the website.

Cookies enhance our website performance in a number of ways including providing a secure way for us to measure use of the website. This helps to determine what is popular and can influence future content and development. Cookies in themselves do not identify individual users but identify only the computer used. The National Trust for Scotland does not use “tracking/persistent cookies” or “Third Party Cookies”. We collect this information in a way which does not identify anyone. We do not make any attempt to find out the identities of those visiting our website.

The only exception under the new regulations is if what we are doing is strictly necessary for a service requested by the user. For example, a cookie that is used to ensure that when you have chosen the goods you wish to buy and click the ”add to basket’ or ‘proceed to checkout’ button, the site ‘remembers’ what you have chosen on a previous page. We do not need to get consent for this type of activity.

Why do we use Cookies?

We use cookies to collect data about the performance of our websites and to ensure an easy and consistent user experience for our visitors.

We may use cookies to personalise web pages during your visit to our websites. We will also use them to remember you for easy navigation and access during your visit.

We may also use cookies to track your visit to our websites. We will collect data to identify you whilst you are browsing so that we can measure our websites and make improvements in the future. This information is only used for analytical purposes, and will be limited to a minimum. This type of cookie does not hold personally identifiable information.

Can cookies harm my computer?

No. Cookies do not harm your computer and cannot carry viruses. Cookies are intended to enhance your experience of a website, rather than obstruct it.

Google Analytics

In addition, we use Google Analytics to analyse the use of this website. Google Analytics generates statistical and other information about website use by means of cookies, which are stored on users’ computers. The information generated relating to the National Trust for Scotland’s website is used to create reports about the use of the website. Google Analytics do not personally identify the user in any way whatsoever.

Cookies used by the National Trust for Scotland

Functionality Description of Cookie Cookie Used  
Setting the Scope of Your Site Content Because any cookie read/write access is restricted by a combination of thecookie name and its domain, default visitor tracking via Google Analytics is confined to the domain of the page on which the tracking code is installed. For the most common scenario where the tracking code is installed on a single domain (and no other sub-domains), the generic set up is correct. In other situations where you wish to track content across domains or sub-domains, or restrict tracking to a smaller section of a single domain, you use additional methods in the ga.js tracking code to define content scope. All cookies  
Determining Visitor Session The Google Analytics tracking for ga.js uses two cookies to establish asession. If either of these two cookies are absent, further activity by the user initiates the start of a new session.This description is specific to the ga.js tracking code for web pages. If you use Analytics tracking for other environments such as Flash or mobile you should check the documentation for those environments to learn how sessions are calculated or established. _utmb
Identfying Uinque Visitors Each unique browser that visits a page on your site is provided with a unique ID via the __utma cookie. In this way, subsequent visits to your website via the same browser are recorded as belonging to the same (unique) visitor. Thus, if a person interacted with your website using both Firefox and Internet Explorer, the Analytics reports would track this activity under two unique visitors. Similarly if the same browser were used by two different visitors, but with a separate computer account for each, the activity would be recorded under two unique visitor IDs. On the other hand, if the browser happens to be used by two different people sharing the same computer account, one unique visitor ID is recorded, even though two unique individuals accessed the site. _utma  
Tracking Traffic Sources & Navigation When visitors reach your site via a search engine result, a direct link, or an ad that links to your page, Google Analytics stores the type of referral information in a cookie. The parameters in the cookie value string are parsed and sent in the GIF Request (in the utmcc variable). The expiration date for the cookie is set as 6 months into the future. This cookie gets updated with each subsequent page view to your site; thus it is used to determine visitor navigation within your site. _utmz 
Custom Variables You can define your own segments for reporting on your particular data.When you use the setCustVar() method in your tracking code to define custom variables, Google Analytics uses this cookie to track and report on that information. In a typical use case, you might use this method to segment your website visitors by a custom demographic that they select on your website (income, age range, product preferences). _utmv 
Website Optimser You can use Google Analytics with Google Website Optimizer (GWO), whichis a tool that helps determine the most effective design for your site. When a website optimizer script executes on your page, a _utmx cookie is written to the browser and its value is sent to Google Analytics. _utmx  

Cookies set by Google Analytics

Google Analytics sets the following cookies as described in the table below. A default configuration and use of Google Analytics sets only the first 4 cookies in the table.

Name Description Expiration
_utma This cookie is typically written to the browser upon the first visit to your site from thatweb browser. If the cookie has been deleted by the browser operator, and the browser subsequently visits your site, a new __utma cookie is written with a different unique ID. This cookie is used to determine unique visitors to your site and it is updated with each page view. Additionally, this cookie is provided with a unique ID that Google Analytics uses to ensure both the validity and accessibility of the cookie as an extra security measure. 2 years from set/update
_utmb This cookie is used to establish and continue a user session with your site. When auser views a page on your site, the Google Analytics code attempts to update this cookie. If it does not find the cookie, a new one is written and a new session is established. Each time a user visits a different page on your site, this cookie is updated to expire in 30 minutes, thus continuing a single session for as long as user activity continues within 30-minute intervals. This cookie expires when a user pauses on a page on your site for longer than 30 minutes. You can modify the default length of a user session with the setSessionsCookieTimeout() method. 30 minutes from set/update
_utmc This cookie operates in conjunction with the __utmb cookie to determine whether ornot to establish a new session for the user. In particular, this cookie is not provided with an expiration date, so it expires when the user exits the browser. Should a user visit your site, exit the browser and then return to your website within 30 minutes, the absence of the __utmc cookie indicates that a new session needs to be established, despite the fact that the __utmb cookie has not yet expired. Not Set
_utmz This cookie stores the type of referral used by the visitor to reach your site, whether via a direct method, a referring link, a website search, or a campaign such as an ad or an email link. It is used to calculate search engine traffic, ad campaigns and page navigation within your own site. The cookie is updated with each page view to your site. 6 months from set/update
_utmv This cookie is not normally present in a default configuration of the tracking code. The __utmv cookie passes the information provided via the _setVar()method, which you use to create a custom user segment. This string is then passed to the Analytics servers in the GIF request URL via the utmcc parameter. This cookie is only written if you have added the _setVar() method for the tracking code on your website page. 2 years from set/update
_utmx This cookie is used by Website Optimizer and only set when the Website Optimizertracking code is installed and correctly configured for your pages. When the optimizer script executes, this cookie stores the variation this visitor is assigned to for each experiment, so the visitor has a consistent experience on your site. 2 years from set/update
PREF Google. 1 year from set/update

Cookies Set By FAcebook & Twitter

Facebook and Twitter set the following cookies as described in the table below.

Name Description Expiration  
datr Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. 2 years from set/update  
locale Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. 1 week from set/update  
reg_fb_ref Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. Not set  
reg_fb_gate Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. Not set  
_e_0lct_0 Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. 1 week from set/update  
act Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. Not set  
wd Facebook – used for buttons and widgets. Not set  
guest_id Twitter – used for buttons and widgets. 2 years from set/update  
pid Twitter – used for buttons and widgets. 18 Months from set/update

Managing Cookies

We use cookies on our all of our websites to improve your online experience. These cookies can make it quicker and easier to browse and navigate our websites. In general, allowing cookies lets you make the most of all the functionalities on our websites, which have been added to give you the best possible experience.

You can choose to accept or decline cookies. Most web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you can modify your browser setting to decline cookies if you prefer. This may prevent you from taking full advantage of the website. You can also delete the cookies on leaving the site. If you want to delete any cookies that are already on your computer, please refer to the instructions for your file management software to locate the file or directory that stores cookies. Please note that by deleting our cookies or disabling future cookies you may not be able to access certain areas or features of our site.

If you would prefer the National Trust for Scotland not to use cookies in your browser, you can set your browser to reject cookies or to let you know when a website tries to put one in your browser software.

How to Disable Cookies

On your PC

Internet Explorer

  1. Go to “Tools” and then “Internet Options”
  2. Click on the Privacy tab
  3. Use the slider to change your cookie settings to how you want them. A description of each setting will appear next to each option.

Mozilla Firefox

  1. Go to “Tools” and then “Internet Options”
  2. Click on the Privacy icon
  3. Change the history settings to set your browser to reject all cookies, or to tailor your cookie settings to how you want them.

Google Chrome

  1. Click on the spanner and select “Settings”, which will open in a new tab
  2. On the left hand side, select “Under the Hood”
  3. Click “Content Settings” under “Privacy”
  4. Choose your preferred option in the cookies menu

On an Apple Mac

Internet Explorer 5

  1. Choose Preferences from Explorer menu
  2. Select Receiving Files options
  3. Select Cookies
  4. Choose your preferred settings

Mozilla (Firefox)

  1. Choose Preferences from the Edit menu.
  2. Select Privacy & Security, then select Cookies.
  3. Choose your preferred settings.

Safari (Mac OS X)

  1. Choose Preferences from Safari menu
  2. Select Security icon
  3. Cookie settings are shown in window
  4. Choose your preferred settings


  1. Go to Opera in the main menu and select Preferences (or press Alt+P to access them directly)
  2. Select Privacy

On Mobile Devices


  1. Go to “Settings” and then select “Safari”
  2. Click on “Privacy”, where you will be able to change your cookie settings


  1. Go to “Settings” and then select “Safari”
  2. Click on “Privacy”, where you will be able to change your cookie settings

Samsung Galaxy

  1. In the internet browser, open the menu and select “More”
  2. Choose “Settings”
  3. Scroll down to “Privacy”, and then click to accept or reject cookies, or to clear cookie data

All Other Mobile Devices

All Other Mobile Devices Please consult the device owner’s manual.

Natinal Trust for Scotland National Heritage Scotladn Fund Raising Standards

The National Trust for Scotland for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty is a charity registered in Scotland, Charity Number SC 007410 and depends for its support on the subscriptions of its members, donations and legacies.